By pumping up Kyiv with weapons, the United States is undermining strategic and regional security and pushing NATO towards a direct clash with Russia. Such a statement did Russian Ambassador to the USA Anatoly Antonov.
“Washington is consistently pursuing a policy of completely curtailing bilateral relations. <...> The United States continues to push for a direct clash between NATO and Russia,” he said, commenting on the US supply of long-range ATACMS missiles to Ukraine.
Antonov recalled that Moscow had previously repeatedly warned Washington “against rash steps.” According to him, assistance to Kyiv makes the United States “a direct accomplice in its crimes,” since the Ukrainian Armed Forces use Western weapons to attack civilian infrastructure and civilians.
In conclusion, the ambassador emphasized that US supplies do not affect the situation in the combat zone and that the objectives of the special operation will be completed.
On October 17, CNN, citing two American officials, reported that the United States had secretly supplied Ukraine with long-range ATACMS missiles. Sources say Ukraine has already used ATACMS missiles, which have a maximum range of about 186 miles (300 km). Later this information confirmed President of Ukraine Vladimir Zelensky.
ATACMS weighs about 2 tons, the cost of one guided missile is about $1.5 million. Such missiles can be launched using HIMARS multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS), which the Ukrainian Armed Forces already have at their disposal.
Russian authorities have repeatedly criticized the supply of Western weapons to Kyiv and pointed to the growing direct and indirect involvement of Western countries in the conflict in Ukraine. Moscow also pointed to an attempt by the West to prolong the fighting with arms supplies.